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Journal: A New Beginning

Note: This Journal entry was written on October 12, 2001, as I walked on the Old Tokaido. Take a look at that day's Logbook for more.


It's like starting all over. All the information I've gathered to travel the Tokaido must be set aside. New books, new pamphlets, new websites to consult. Guessing (correctly) that my PHS data link card wouldn't work up on Koyasan, I spent a few hours last night downloading information about Shikoku.

It's a new beginning.

Tomorrow morning--necessarily early--I will walk the 2 kilometers to the tomb of Kobo Daishi. I will buy some pilgrim's supplies--a new stamp book, a white pilgrim's shirt to go over my regular clothes, a purple stole, some candles. If possible I will have the top of my hat painted with a pilgrim's message; (if not, I will have it done Sunday at Temple 1.)

And then I will head down from the mountain transformed into a proper henro or pilgrim. I will take trains to Wakayama, then cross over by boat to the enchanted island of Shikoku. By this time tomorrow I will have set my foot--irrevocably, some say--on the pilgrim's path.

In a way, the slog from Tokyo to Kyoto and the mad sacred sightseeing of the past few days has all been prelude to this. It feels like a turning point.

Stay tuned.

Posted October 3, 2019

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